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Appropriate Metric Units of Mass or Capacity

Choose among selected units of metric measure for given situations.

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Appropriate Metric Units of Mass or Capacity

Measuring Volume with the Metric System

What about volume? How do we choose the correct unit to measure volume?

There are two metric units for measuring volume or capacity, milliliters and liters. This comparison may seem a little more obvious that the units for mass. A milliliter would be used to measure very small amounts of liquid. Milliliters are much smaller even than ounces. A liter would be used to measure much larger volumes of liquid.

A milliliter is \begin{align*}\frac{1}{1000}\end{align*} of a liter.

Would you measure a bottle of soda in liters or milliliters?

You would measure it in liters. A 2 liter bottle of soda is a standard size for soda bottles. Think about milliliters as the amount of liquid in an eyedropper.

Use what you have learned to select the correct metric unit for each item.

Example A

The weight of five pennies

Solution: Grams

Example B

The amount of water in a bathtub.

Solution: Liters

Example C

The weight of a car

Solution: Kilograms


Here are the vocabulary words in this Concept.

Customary System
The system of measurement common in the United States, uses feet, inches, pounds, cups, gallons, etc.
the amount of liquid an object or item can hold
the weight of an object

Video Review

Here are videos for review.

Khan Academy Conversion Between Metric Units

James Sousa Metric Unit Conversions


Directions: Choose the best unit of either length, mass or volume to measure each item.

1. A dictionary

2. A flea under a microscope

3. A jug of apple cider

4. An almond

5. Drops of water from an eyedropper

6. Ten dimes

7.  Diameter of a dime

8. A bucket of water

9. A baby bottle

10. A handful of rice

11. A large jug of water

12. A water tower

13. The water in a swimming pool

14.  Distance across a swimming pool

15. The weight of a boat

16. A handful of sand

17. The weight of a backpack

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